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January 17, 2005

Anti-War Idiocy

This sort of thing really frosts me:

I'm sitting in a small coffeehouse in Corvallis where the coffee is good and there are people around. Generally, I enjoy the lively conversation and various viewpoints that typify life in a college town. Not tonight.

For the past 20 minutes, I've listened to a conversation where an earnest young man is explaining to the young woman sitting across the table why the resistance in Iraq isn't really terrorism, it's just the normal reaction of citizens who resent the invasion of their homeland. And how our troops react to bullets by indiscrimately shooting in the direction of the shots. Just mowing 'em down.

There is such a thing as principled opposition to the war. My brother opposes the war. My oldest friend does, too. I understand my friend's reasons and respect them, though I disagree. She has thought the matter through, and her opposition is based on pragmatism (she doesn't think we have a vital national interest in the region) and concern for the welfare and safety of the troops. She doesn't condescend to the military by calling them idiots, or fools, or automatons who believe everything they're told. She doesn't believe they are baby killers.

One can oppose the war without invoking Godwin's Law, villifying the administration, lying about our progress over there, impugning the honor of our troops, or engaging in childish protests. Would it hurt the Left to admit (just once) that even the Iraqis want us to beat the terrorists and welcome the prospect of representative government?

Yes, Iraq has huge problems right now. Huge. But it is indisputably a better place than it was under Hussein and elections there have a chance of hope and opportunity. It is important to remember, with all the violence one sees in Iraq now, it is confined mostly to the Sunni triangle, and some 80 to 85 percent of Iraq is relatively calm. It is also worth reading the polls out of Iraq, polls of Iraqis who overwhelmingly want to vote and look forward to voting, the most recent of which includes a poll of, of all places, Baghdad (see Alsabaah poll of earlier this month; 4,974 “Iraqis living in and around Baghdad”): Question: “Do you support military action against the terrorists?” Answer: “Yes, 87.7%.” Question: “Will the security problems cause you to? Not come out and vote the day of elections = 18.3%; Come out and vote the day of elections = 78.3%” That, from the Sunni Triangle.

There is nothing wrong with honorable protest or honest debate. That is the kind of speech military people are willing to fight - and die, if need be - to protect. The other is just idiocy, which is protected too under our Constitution.

We ought to allow it, but we don't have to allow it to pass unchallenged.

Posted by Cassandra at January 17, 2005 07:27 AM

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Well, it it the opinion of the anti war mongers that it would hurt the Right to admit We Were Wrong.
For some reason, I can't imagine that we were.

Posted by: Cricket at January 17, 2005 12:03 PM

Clueless in Corvalis. Many of these terrorists are not even from Iraq. Would I be considered a freedom fighter if I went to Venezuala and took up arms against the communist in charge there?

Soldiers are not allowed to fire back at people that fired on them? I would respond to that but I am fresh out of duct tape to wrap my head with.

Posted by: Pile On® at January 17, 2005 07:19 PM

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